Review: Best TS 10m and 7m 2015

2015-04-25 13.17.47We took the Best TS out for a test to see till what extend the expectation were met. One thing is already for sure; the kite is used for the highest Woo Sports world record jump at an unbelievable 19.1 meters, so it cannot be bad for boosting big air!*

Best has made some serious moves the last couple of years. They got some of the best riders of the world, like Youri Zoon, Ruben Lenten and Gisela Pulido, in their team. And, related or not, there are rumours that Richard Branson and some rich founder of ZED not only bought the PKRA but also invested in Best Kiteboarding. It is difficult to find the facts, but it does rise the expectation of the kites from Best Kiteboarding

World record jump

We got our hands on the 2015 Best TS ten and seven meter. The TS is one of the five type of Best kites and has the label (like a whole lot of other kites) Do it all. Reading the specifications of the Best kites it looks like the TS is the second of four comparable Best kite types. world record jumpThe fifth is a wave kite (Cabo). So the TS 2015 (2015 is its fourth edition) is aimed at the average rider. The TS is indeed described as the ultimate crossover kite for everybody and with the 5 struts and 2 battens the TS should be ready for it’s claimed perfomance kite. The TS doesn’t come cheap; the 10m is (kite only) 1200 euro’s.

lines Best RP bar
lines Best RP bar

 

The bar
The first thing we noticed on the Best 2015 RP bar are the incredible solid looking -300kg!-lines. The seem to be covered with a special kind of layer, which does make your hands black the first few times you use them. The second little suprise the bar holds is its depower line; it is elastic! The split point of the two front lines couldn’t be lower, the safety system is exactly as it should be (with the possibility of a safe suicide mode). A very important detail for the safety is it possibility to rotate the depower line to untangle the 2 front lines after a (several) back-, front- or kiteloops. We have two remarks on the -near perfect- 2015 bar; The square shaped stopper “ball” broke within five minutes of using the bar. Apparently this is a known issue. The second remark is on the fact that there is no insert at the bottom of the bar around the depower line. Which means after a unhooked trick the chickenloop isn’t aiming straight and firm from the bar for re-hooking again. A feature that many other brands do have,

twistable depower line
twistable depower line
Best 2015 RP bar
Best 2015 RP bar



The test

Best TS in- and deflate
Best TS in- and deflate

We tested the 10m several times in 18 till 24 knots with small till medium sized waves. We compared it simultaneously with the Gaastra Pure 9m 2015 and the 9m North Dice 2015. We also had a short go with the 7m Best TS in 35-45 knots of wind with medium till big waves right at same time and moment the Best TS 2015 7m was used to jump the world record of 19.1m.

One thing we couldn’t figure out (may be it was our unfamiliarity with the Best kites) how to use the in- and deflate properly. The wide inflate needs the biggest hose from “any pump”. But ours kept coming off each time we had a bit of pressure on it. With a lot of force (which may be the way to do it, but it felt a bit like we would destroy it) it did stay in place. Deflating is done by pushing the red button, but again, it needs a firm push to keep it deflating.

Tip of the TS
Tip of the TS

The test of the TS was one of the most difficult ones we had to do so far. We knew, and felt, that the Best kite has loads of potential. But the first tests with the 10m in 20 knots wind didn’t give the smiling faces which we would have expected up front. The kite, in these conditions, gave little feed back and wasn’t very powerful. The kite has the lightest bar pressure we have felt so far. The first thing we did is set back the steering lines to more bar pressure. In this setting is was still very light, but we did have some fun with the kite. Most amazing was the perfect, smooth but still very short pop the kite has. Al though, like most riders, we are no unhooked freestyle experts we made some really nice unhooked freestyle tricks with it. With those kind of moves you feel the combination (probably) of the elastic depowerline (does it play a role in the pop?) and the stability (stays where you put it). You can go for it as hard as you need to go, the kite stays where it needs to be. You just need to have enough confidence, since the feed back on the steering lines won’t tell you where the kite is. The closest feeling, all though with more pressure on the steering lines, was with the North Vegas 2015,

The (over)powered session with the 7m in 35+ knots of wind was kind of scary. The kite is so firm and steady it need a lot of confidence to set it out of it’s comfort zone backward into the power zone to get you air born. If you have the balls, and the power in your legs to keep your rail, you will be rewarded. The kite -as we now know from the record breaking jump- will get you as high as your capabilities are. We reckon a strong young 20 year old on boots will suit the kite most. No surprise the guy who jumped with the TS at 19,1 m, Gijs Wassenaar, is a young fearless, long athlete. What we wonder how much more radical the Best GP and the Best Extract 2015 possibly can be.

* While writing this review, this record has been beaten (twice).

List prices

Best TS 10m 2015 (IV) kite only: Eur 1199,-

Best RP bar Eur 399,-

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11 thoughts on “Review: Best TS 10m and 7m 2015”

  1. Hi Tiga,
    we had a go for only about 15 minutes (due to lack of wind) with the TS 2016 7m and it seems it did not really changed much.
    Dave
    We Test Kites

  2. Hi Dave , I purchased the best TS 8m , 2015 and it’s fantastic , so is the RP bar !! The TS lighter bar pressure takes a little time to get used to but it’s a fun and super fast kite.
    A very athletic kite as I find it constantly needs bar input – – I’m now thinking of getting the 12m. TS 2016 when it is out but will also purchase a dice 10m for its great wind range and performance ratings –
    Regards / ilias

  3. Hi Dave,
    thanks again for asking. Things get a bit more difficult now; I do understand the questions, and also your remarks on the Rebel. Since we only tested the smaller sizes TS I cannot tell you if a light wind TS is any good. A Rebel has a better low end but is less “alive”, as I would describe it, than a Dice. North by the way has so many kites that it is difficult to understand what they want with all those models, but in general don’t believe a manufacture what they say about it. Almost every manufacturer speaks of a “do it all” kite where we doubt a lot if this is the case.
    I am the same size as you, kite with a 138 twintip, but never go out under 17/18 knots (with a 11m Dice mostly). I may say at this point my advice is not worth much for winds below 18 knots. I would guess a 13m dice will give you a good ride from around 14/15 knots (a Rebel from the same size 1 or 2 knots less). Dices (2015) do tend to stall at light winds, which can be very irritating, the 2016’s should do better at this point, but that remains to be seen.

    Hope this helps?!
    Dave

  4. Hi Dave, very useful but still confusing. I did look at the Dice but it’s pitched by North as being a wave/freestyle kite. Their all round kite being the rebel…
    Since I’m more into improving my freeride, jumps, carved turns and old school tricks (grabs, backrolls, spins…) I tried the rebel. Found it very smooth but a bit park and ride and I’m not sure about 5 lines.
    In addition, when not traveling for business or pleasure I (try to) ride in the florida/Bahamas area where we (very) frequently have 11-14kts subtropical hot light wind and I was hoping to find a kite where the larger size (13-14m) would allow me to ride and have decent fun in those conditions. I’d like to keep the same kite model throughout my quiver to avoid changing style depending on the conditions.
    From that perspective the TS was tempting because of the 15m LW model (assuming it would have the low end). You say the dice has a better low end, do you think a 13m Dice would fit the bill (I’m 78kgs with a slightly oversized north Jaime 139×42 board) ?
    I tried a rebel 14m in similar conditions and it might do the trick (but it’s a rebel). Would you rather recommend going for a dedicated LW kite TS 15, juice,…?

    Thanks,
    Dave

  5. Hi Dave, out of the tested kites (probably there are more but these we actualley tested) the North Dice, the Cabrinha fx and the F-one bandit (7 more than 8) are true all round kites. They are at around 90% of the best kites for for example wind range, jumping, responsive reaction,medium to light bar pressure, freestyle, wave and easily loose power if needed. Extremely friendly and are fun to ride with and won’t limit 95% of the riders.
    Dave

  6. Hi Dave,
    Thanks for your compliment. About the TS, some good questions; considering it is placed between the Kahoona and the GP, and rated “do it all” it is a pretty radical kite. If you compare it with (true) all round kites like the North Dice and the F-one bandit, FX from Cabrinha etc, it is far from all round.
    The bar pressure is light (sheeting in, the turning input needs real effort), we had it on several settings, but the conclusions are no different. I would only choose for this kite if you want to become one of the best and don’t mind to take the side effects (raw, more energy etc, less wind range) with it. There are more friendly kites that will not make you the champ but won’t punish you as much.
    Hope it helps,
    Dave
    We Test Kites

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  7. Hi, first thanks for your reviews, the only ones not blatantly influenced by commercial considerations I’ve seen so far!
    Your TS review left me hanging a little bit though. I can’t get a clear picture of the kite based on it. You both say it lacks power and is “radical”, requiring iron legs to hold a rail and best suited to a 20 yr old with a death wish ;). You say the bar pressure is very light (is that sheeting pressure or turning input?) but that the kite is very stable. You don’t comment on the effect of the change of settings on the turning speed, dont draw comparisons with the reference kites you mentioned and conclude saying the kite offers unlimited possibilities but didn’t put a smile on your face…
    I’m an intermediate rider working on my first tricks and having a hard time figuring out if this kite would suit me based on those info.
    Could you elaborate a bit ?

    Cheers,

    Dave

  8. Hi Ilias,
    First of all thanks for taking some time to read the review.
    We have tested the Best TS in several conditions. Certainly not all, but enough (wind ranging from 18-24 knots for the 10m a lot more for the 7m)to say we understood and felt the kite good enough to judge it.
    The RP bar is a good one, but it has some issues; the release is heavy (as described) but further there it feels and works perfect.
    Unhooked is also described and won’t set any limits for an advanced rider. It may be it’s best aspect, since it won’t move without the input which is perfect for unhooked tricks. upwind is average compared to other kites; the small LE will push the kite easily to the edge of the window, but it’s (sort of c) shape is not the best for going upwind.
    One of the major aspects stated as follows in the review on jumping;
    If you have the balls, and the power in your legs to keep your rail, you will be rewarded. can tell you for jumping it is not the kite that sets the limits. So in potential it can jump really amazing, but it won’t go by it self.
    I hope you have some answers now,
    Dave
    We Test Kites

  9. Not Sure why you did not test some of these kites in the right conditions ?? Example the best TS 10 , what good is the review if you did not put the kite in the right wind? How was the RP bar , apart from the broken stopper ball? How does the best TS work unhooked , how is it upwind and jumping ?

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